Canon SX720 HS has a 20.3MP 1/2.3-inch (6.17 x 4.55 mm ) sized BSI-CMOS sensor and features DIGIC 6 processor. On the other hand, Sony W230 has a 12.0MP 1/2.3-inch (6.17 x 4.55 mm ) sized CCD sensor .
Canon SX720 HS's sensor provides 8.3MP more than Sony W230's sensor, which gives a significant advantage in real life. You can print your images larger or crop more freely.
On the other hand, please keep in mind that Max sensor resolution is not the only determinant of resolving power. Factors such as the optical elements, low pass filter, pixel size and sensor technology also affects the final resolution of the captured image.
Below you can see the SX720 HS and W230 sensor size comparison.
Canon SX720 HS and Sony W230 have sensor sizes so they will provide same level of control over the depth of field when used with same focal length and aperture. On the other hand, since Sony W230 has 68% larger pixel area (2.34µm2 vs 1.39µm2) compared to Canon SX720 HS, it has larger pixel area to collect light hence potential to have less noise in low light / High ISO images.